Lemon Pepper Chicken Pasta — EASY and ready in 15 minutes with comforting pasta, juicy chicken, and there is so much ZESTY flavor from the lemon, basil, and spinach!! A family favorite that’s perfect for busy weeknights!!
Quick Lemon Pepper Pasta with Chicken
This lemon pepper chicken pasta recipe is as simple as boiling pasta and while it cooks, to a separate skillet add bite-sized pieces of chicken breast and season it with lemon pepper, garlic, and lemon juice before adding fresh baby spinach.
Combine the cooked pasta, chicken, spinach, add fresh fragrant basil, and get ready to serve.
So fast, easy, ready in minutes, and full of robust lemon flavor which complements the basil perfectly.
This lemon chicken pasta is a guaranteed family favorite that’s perfect for busy weeknights. Who can say no to al dente pasta, juicy chicken, and all that lemon peppery and basil goodness?
Ingredients in Lemon Pepper Chicken Past
To make this lemon pepper chicken and pasta recipe, you’ll need:
- Cooked rotini
- Chicken breasts
- Lemon pepper
- Kosher salt
- Lemon juice
- Fresh baby spinach
- Fresh basil
How to Make Lemon Pepper Chicken Pasta
This is a 15-minute pasta recipe — it’s as easy as it gets! Pair it with a simple green side salad and you’ve got dinner on the table in no time.
- Cook the pasta according to package instructions.
- While the pasta cooks, add the diced chicken to an oiled skillet and season with lemon pepper. Cook until no longer pink.
- Add the garlic, lemon juice, and spinach to the chicken. Cover and wait for the spinach to wilt.
- Add the chicken, spinach, and all cooking juices to the pot with the cooked pasta, and stir to combine
- Add the basil to the lemon pepper chicken and pasta, then serve immediately.
Frequently Asked Questions
Of course! Any short, sturdy pasta will work in this lemon basil pasta recipe.
I don’t see why not! I bet frozen peas, chopped broccoli, or sugar snap peas would be good additions.
Definitely! I bet you could use shrimp or salmon as well for something different, but still healthy.
Tips for Making Lemon Pepper Pasta with Chicken
Extra lemon flavor: If you are a true lemon fanatic like my daughter, add a bit of lemon zest at the end. In addition to the lemon pepper and lemon juice, this really takes the lemon flavor over the top, but I recommend this only if you’re really into lemony things.
Optional cheese: If you want to take this into a cheesy realm, add freshly grated Parmesan cheese at the end. I didn’t but I know it would take this lighter comfort food recipe squarely into pure comfort food territory. Do as your waistline prefers.
Chicken: I always have chicken breasts on hand, which is why I used them in this recipe.
What to Serve with the Pasta
Keep things simple by serving the lemon pepper pasta and chicken with a green side salad or steamed veggies. Or, prepare one or more of the following sides:
- Garlic Cheese Flatbread
- Cheese-Stuffed Bread Rolls
- 12 Superfoods Salad
- Kale Caesar Salad
- Balsamic Roasted Broccoli
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Lemon Pepper Basil Chicken and Pasta
This lemon pepper chicken pasta is EASY and ready in 15 minutes with comforting pasta, juicy chicken, plus there is so much ZESTY flavor!
- 1 pound rotini, cooked according to package directions (small shells, wheels, bowtie, penne, or small-shaped pasta may be substituted)
- 1.25 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, diced into bite-sized pieces
- 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 to 2 teaspoons lemon pepper, or to taste
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste
- 3 to 4 cloves garlic, finely minced or pressed
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 6 ounces fresh baby spinach
- 1/2 cup fresh basil, minced, or to taste
- To a large pot, boil the pasta according to package directions; drain and return to the large pot.
- While pasta cooks, to a separate large skillet, add the chicken, drizzle with 2 tablespoons olive oil, evenly season with lemon pepper, salt, and cook for about 5 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through. Stir and flip intermittently to ensure even cooking.
- Add the garlic and cook for one minute, or until fragrant. Stir nearly constantly.
- Add the lemon juice, half the spinach, stir to combine, and cover skillet with a lid for about 2 minutes to encourage spinach to wilt.
- Add the remaining half of the spinach, and stir to combine until wilted.
- Add the chicken, spinach, and all cooking juices to the pot with the cooked pasta, and stir to combine.
- Add the basil, remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil, and stir to combine. Serve immediately. Recipe will keep airtight in the fridge for up to 5 days.
- 1. Optionally stir in about 1 to 2 teaspoons lemon zest for extra lemon flavor at the end.
- Optionally add about 3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese at the end.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 368Total Fat: 13gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 80mgSodium: 748mgCarbohydrates: 26gFiber: 2gSugar: 1gProtein: 35g
More Chicken and Pasta Recipes:
Mediterranean Lemon Chicken Pasta Salad – This chicken pasta salad is loaded with flavor, ready in minutes, and showcases Mediterranean-inspired ingredients! It’s perfect for summer potlucks and barbecues (no mayo!) and feeds a crowd. Or make it as an EASY family dinner with planned leftovers!
Honey Lemon Chicken Pasta — Ready in 20 minutes, making it the perfect weeknight meal! Pair with a simple salad or veggies and extra lemon wedges to amp up the lemon flavor. Your family will love this easy pasta recipe!
Greek Lemon Chicken and Orzo – EASY, ready in 25 minutes, and feeds a crowd!! Juicy lemon chicken with orzo, fresh spinach, cucumbers, and tomatoes make this a dinnertime WINNER! Great for parties, picnics, and potlucks!!
One-Bag Lemon Chicken and Pasta – An EASY lemon chicken and pasta recipe that’s family-friendly and perfect for busy weeknights!! Everything cooks in ONE bag! The chicken is juicy, the pasta is tender, and cleanup is a breeze!!
Chicken Orzo Salad – Juicy chicken tossed with orzo, tomatoes, cucumbers, basil, and a super flavorful lemon vinaigrette!! Easy, healthy, ready in 30 minutes, and a perfect way to use your garden fresh veggies!!
Skinny Italian Chicken Pasta Salad – EASY, ready in 30 minutes, feeds a crowd, and is on the SKINNY side!! Juicy chicken, fresh veggies, and the pasta are tossed in a light and tangy homemade Italian lemon vinaigrette!!
Chicken and Pasta with Asparagus and Tomatoes – EASY, ready in 20 minutes, and the asparagus, tomatoes, and basil keep this chicken and pasta recipe tasting LIGHTER and FRESHER!!
15-Minute Cheesy Chicken Pasta and Vegetables – EASY and ready in minutes!! The cheesy pasta is COMFORT food while all the veggies add a HEALTHIER twist! Family-friendly and perfect for busy weeknights!!
Originally posted August 16, 2019 and reposted August 27, 2021 with updated text.
Hello Averie, This looks just so delicious not to try. Last time I tried making it using another recipe, I think I messed up with the amount of lemon. Definitely trying this week and will let you know.
I love lemon and you had me at 15 minutes! I am going to be so sad when summer is over and I can’t use my fresh basil out of my garden. I need to put this in my end of summer dinner hit list.
This is exactly why I posted this recipe today – because it’s an end of summer type “one last chance” recipe. I know, I will miss the abundance of basil this time of year too!
This looks amazing! Such a great weeknight meal option during back to school season!
Easy weeknight meal and still feels summery enough. I am not quite ready for pumpkin mac and cheese…almost though :)